Horizon Zero Dawn: Analysing the Official Specifications and the Best PC’s to play

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The official PC specifications for Horizon Zero Dawn are finally here!

What is Horizon Zero dawn about?

This game was originally released as a Playstation exclusive back in February 2017 and has won multiple awards thanks to the beautiful graphics and exciting gameplay. In this action-packed role-playing game you play as the main character Aloy, a young hunter who is an outcast from her tribe. 1,000 years from now the strange world around you is ruled by deadly Machines, much larger than Aloy and each battle is a challenge that requires intelligent tactics to win. Each attack needs to be carefully aimed to unleash devastating damage, break apart and bring down a variety of these giant creatures. There is a vast open-world to discover, mysterious to unravel and rival tribes to keep you on your toes. As you command Aloy, you must fight to uncover her past and use what you have learned to stop a catastrophic threat to the future.

Horizon Zero Dawn complete edition trailer:

Frostclaw Machine

What is the gameplay like in Horizon Zero Dawn?

The landscape around Aloy is vibrant and beautiful with a wide variety of terrain to explore. Discover expansive forests, enormous mountains and the ruins of bygone civilizations as you unearth strange artefacts and investigate crumbling ruins to unlock the mysteries hidden within.

The world is brought to life thanks to the day and night cycle and changing weather systems that add to the immersion and realism. The game is centred around a rewarding role-playing experience that involves a wide variety of tactical combat. The weapons are primitive but can be fused with advanced technology to craft advanced gear that turns the dangerous predators around you into prey. Aloy has several tools to help you battle large enemies such as traps, potions, special weapons and override which causes machines to turn on each other. Aloy’s main tool is the Focus which is a wearable computer and augmented reality system that assists with quest items, hunting machines and inspecting them. Scanning Machines with the Focus device reveals the valuable components which can be collected and weak points which can be exploited. Overall Horizon Zero dawn is a great mix of fighting, tactics, crafting, exploration and storytelling.

Horizon Zero dawn Machine attack

When is Horizon Zero Dawn available on PC?

The complete edition of Zero Dawn is coming to PC on the 7th of August 2020 and can be preordered for £39.99 on Steam. The Complete Edition for PC includes the huge Frozen Wilds expansion which comes with new lands, skills, weapons and Machines. You’ll also get Outfits and weapons plus extra packs full of useful craft items.

Full list of content that comes with the complete edition:

  • Horizon Zero Dawn
  • The Frozen Wilds expansion
  • Carja Storm Ranger Outfit and Carja Mighty Bow
  • Carja Trader Pack
  • Banuk Trailblazer Outfit and Banuk Culling Bow
  • Banuk Traveller Pack
  • Nora Keeper Pack
  • Digital artbook

What are the specifications required for Horizon Zero dawn on PC?

The PC version of the game comes with additional features such as widescreen support, dynamic foliage, improved reflections, unlocked framerate and a benchmarking tool. All these features combine to make a new updated version of the game that is designed to be played on a powerful gaming PC. Therefore it’s important to pay attention to the specifications and ensure your hardware can give you the best experience.

Horizon Zero Dawn Requirements:

 Recommended non-VR or Minimum RequirementsRecommended Requirements 
Operating System Windows 10 64-bit Windows 10 64-bit
Processor (CPU) Intel Core 3.3GHz i5-2500K or AMD 3.5GHz FX 6300 Intel Core 3.5GHz i7-4770K or AMD 3.5GHz Ryzen 5 1500X
Graphics Card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce GTX 780 (3 GB) or AMD Radeon R9 290 (4GB) Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 (6 GB) or AMD Radeon RX 580 (8GB)
Hard Drive (Storage Requirements) 100 GB available space 100 GB available space
Memory (RAM) 8GB RAM 16GB RAM
DirectX Version 12 Version 12

Aloy mounted

Will my PC run Horizon Zero Dawn?

The Minimum specifications reveal that if you built a high-end gaming PC around 7 years ago then you will be able to run Horizon Zero dawn at some level. However, the spec list doesn’t reveal what sort of performance we can expect. I would guess minimum PC specs to not be as graphically rich as playing the PS4 version and it’s likely to be at a modest resolution with graphical settings set to low. To get the best experience playing Horizon Zero dawn and begin to take advantage of the PC specific features you will want to aim for at least the recommended specifications. A GTX 1060 with 6GB of Vram is capable of playing demanding games such as AC: Origins and Far Cry 5 at 1440p 30fps+ or 1080p 60fps+ and I think we can expect similar performance from Horizon Zero dawn. If you want to play the game at 4K resolution or on a 144Hz monitor I would recommend investing in a high-end GPU or prebuilt system.

The CPU specifications are reasonably modest in a world of 5Ghz 10 core CPUs and an older processor with at least 4 cores, 8 threads and a 3.5Ghz clock speed will give you a good experience. RAM requirements are as expected for a new title and 16GB is the norm for most modern games with 8GB being a reasonable minimum requirement. The 100GB of hard drive space is high but not unheard of when it comes to modern titles particularly as the complete edition comes with a large expansion and extra DLC. Fortunately large and fast storage is readily available for a reasonable price and Horizon Zero Dawn would load best when installed on an SSD.

What is a good PC to play Horizon Zero Dawn?

Horizon Zero dawn requires a good gaming computer to make the most of the PC specific features which enhance the gaming experience over the PS4 Version. Overclockers UK specialises in pre-built systems created for the enthusiast and there’s plenty of choice for a good PC that will Play Horizon Zero dawn well. The Enigma Essential is my budget pick and as the components are above the recommended requirements it's the perfect sweet spot for 1080p/1440p Ultra 60fps+ gameplay. My high-end pick for 4K gaming is the BFG nightmare. This PC was designed to handle Doom at Ultra 4K settings and it will do just as well in Horizon Zero Dawn and any other AAA title of your choice.

OCUK Raider Gaming PC

  • Get amazing performance from the 6 Core 12 thread AMD Ryzen 5 3600 CPU.
  • Nvidia GTX 1660 Super 6GB GDDR6 Graphics Card is one of the best price vs performance cards available.
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  • Fast loading times with the WD 250GB M.2 NVMe SSD and more room on the 1TB Seagate HDD.
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  • Get my recommended specifications for only £867.95


OCUK Enigma Essential PC

OCUK BFG Nightmare Gaming PC

  • High-end Ryzen 7 3700X Eight-Core 4.4Ghz processor which can be upgraded in the configurator.
  • You can’t get better than the powerful Asus Strix GeForce RTX 2080Ti OC 11GB Graphics.
  • High speed 16GB DDR4 3600MHz Corsair Vengeance LPX memory kit with the option to upgrade to 32GB.
  • Plenty of fast storage on the 1TB Vulcan SSD or upgrade to a 4TB Samsung 860 Evo.
  • Microsoft Windows comes preinstalled on a Gen4 M.2 Corsair MP600 with blazing fast sequential read speeds of up to 4,950MB/s.
  • Make this Epic PC yours with a choice of beautiful high-end cases and customisable RGB lighting.
  • Available from £2799.95


OCUK BFG Nightmare Gaming PC

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With years of experience in the industry, Overclockers UK is widely known for building some of the finest custom gaming machines on the market. If you want more information on building the best PC for Horizon Zero Dawn why not contact our team of friendly experts on 01782 444455 and they will be happy to help. You can also ask us a question HERE.


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